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He Must Increase and I Must Decrease

As the years pass, I come to a greater and greater realization of how much I must depend upon the grace of God for my salvation. My righteousness appears less and less acceptable in my sight: and if it looks poor in my sight, how awful it must appear in God’s sight! My will and determination do not appear half so strong as they once did, and I feel a greater need to rely upon the unchangeable will of God if I am to persevere. This business of growing in grace is not at all what I once thought it would be. Rather than growing stronger, it seems I am growing weaker. Rather than growing more self-sufficient, it appears that I am growing more Christ – dependent. My utter dependence on Christ for all things is more evident to me now than before. I suppose this is why Peter united growing in grace with growing in the knowledge of the Lord Jesus.  So, if your desire is to grow in grace, then prepare yourself to diminish; prepare yourself to reduce in the flesh, for growth in grace is a growth in “Christ being formed in you,” which always follows the old pattern “He must increase, I must decrease.”

-Joe Terrell

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